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USA Imports FAQs

We know you have questions, and we have answers!

We know how important your furry family member is to you and we want to make sure you have all the information you need to ensure they travel safely.

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How does the import process work?

Once you've submitted the quote request and paid the invoice, you'll be introduced to a booking specialist. They will assist you in getting your pet's import arranged — they'll gather information from you, documents, etc. They'll also communicate with you on the day of arrival to give you updates on the clearance process.

Please note that this quote is for import & customs clearance into the United States only. You'll need to handle the export from your country of origin yourself, either by working directly with any airline or a local pet shipper.

You are also responsible for acquiring the CDC import permit if you're traveling from a high-risk country to the United States.

What airports do you work with?

We can clear customs and offer import services at the following airports:


How much does customs clearance cost?

Customs Clearance costs $750 for a weekday arrival. Additional services:

Holiday/Weekend/After Hours: $100

Airport Assistance: $100

Home delivery: $150 (Must be within 30 miles of the airport)

What are the rules for importing my pet into the United States?

It's a good idea to have a general understanding of what's required to transport your pet to the United States. But there's no need to be an expert — that's where we come in. Your booking coordinator will help manage the government jargon and veterinarian acronyms for you!

Click here to see the general rules for importing a pet into the United States.

Additionally, if you're traveling from a high-risk country, here's information for obtaining the CDC import permit. Please remember that we do not handle getting the CDC import permit for you — this is your responsibility.

What is the minimum lead time required to arrange an import?
We require 5-7 business days, at minimum, to book & confirm import services. This is lead time is figured from the time you sign this proposal.
Does your service include export services and airfare?

No. This quote only is to handle the import & customs clearance once your pet arrives here in the United States. You are responsible for arranging export services from your country origin, either by working directly with an airline or a local pet shipper in your area.

👉 But if you'd like us to quote you for a full-service move, which does include export services, please let us know and we can send you a separate proposal.

Do you obtain a CDC import permit for me?
No. If your pet is traveling from a high-risk country, you are responsible for applying & obtaining the CDC import permit yourself. You can read more about this process here.
What is your refund and change policy?

In the event that you need to cancel your move after you've signed up with us, the following refund schedule will apply:

  • 0-7 days after this proposal is signed, you'll get 100% of your payment back, minus payment processing fees (~6%).
  • 8-21 days after, you'll get 66% of your total payment refunded.
  • 22-45 days after, you'll get 33% of your total payment refunded.
  • Over 45 days or within 5 days of the planned travel date, you'll get 10% of your total payment refunded.

❗👉 Our Pet Protection Plan, as outlined above in Recommended Add-Ons, includes $500 of cancelation protection! We'll refund you $500 more than scheduled above if you're signed up for our Pet Protection Plan.

What are your terms and conditions?

By accepting this proposal, you agree to Starwood Animal Transport's General Terms and Conditions as found on our website. By signing below, you also acknowledge that you have reviewed the quote notes found under the Packages & Pricing heading. If you decide after this contract has been signed that you do not want to move forward for any reason, Starwood will issue you a refund, minus any costs that have already been incurred (including employee hours and materials). No refund will be given within ten days of travel.

You also understand that the above quote can change depending on circumstances out of the control of Starwood or any of its agents, including due to airline delays outside of our control. In the event that additional costs are incurred, Starwood will let you know in writing the reason for and the amount of the additional costs. Additional costs within ten (10) days of travel must be paid within 24 hours of notice via a credit card. Additional costs can be incurred for many reasons, but most commonly for the purchase of a larger airline approved travel kennel on the day of transport due to improper sizing; the increase in airfare because of a differently sized travel kennel; animal care services which may include veterinary services, if necessary; or animal boarding due to a travel delay, flight cancellation, or rejection at check-in because of the temperature.

Snub-Nosed or Brachycephalic breeds (e.g., pugs and bulldogs) can be particularly vulnerable to respiratory problems in stressful situations and can be more sensitive to heat. Due to this, some airlines have special breed restrictions or requirements to ensure that pets travel safely. This may include using a larger kennel size to ensure proper airflow or temperature restrictions. The route listed in our quote has been selected to ensure your pet is able to travel. Senior pets may also be more vulnerable to the stressors of transport (though no airlines have restrictions on age). While travel is generally very safe, we may ask you to sign a form indicating you understand the inherent risks of travel & your wishes in case of emergency. We will always do everything we can to ensure the safety of your pet by screening and working with the best transport partners, but it is incumbent upon you to seek veterinarian advice for your specific situation & pet. It is ultimately up to your veterinarian to screen & approve your higher-risk pet for travel.

Please note these upcoming holidays and dates when our offices will be closed and we will be unable to transport pets: Nov 23rd-27th, Dec 24th-26th, & Dec 31st-Jan 1st.

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We are only transporting cats and dogs at this time. 

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